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WILLIAM STUBBS Seventeen lectures on the study of medieval and modern history and kindred subjects

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WILLIAM STUBBS
Seventeen lectures on the study of medieval and modern history and kindred subjects
page 350



THE NORMAN CHANGES. [XIII. 344 Here we have to remember two things: first, that the I Norman Conquest coincided in time with the Hildebrandine revival; and secondly, that the Conqueror carried through his most important measures of change by the work of Norman ecclesiastics, many of them lawyers rather than theologians; of whom Lanfranc, the representative of a family of Lombard lawyers, was the chief. These two points enable us at once to estimate the importance of the act by which William separated the work of the bishops' courts from the work of the sheriffs' courts, and promised the assistance of the royal or secular justice in carrying into effect the sentences of the episcopal laws. In the first place he had substituted for the native bishops, used to national law and customary procedure, foreign bishops learned in the Hildebrandine jurisprudence and the Roman procedure ; and in the second he had liberated the Church judicature from its association with the popular judicature. But, you will observe, much still remained to be done; for not yet had either Ivo or Gratian collected the Decretum, nor had Irnerius and the Bolognese lawyers begun to lecture on the Pandects ; there was not as yej_j^£C^gnised_canon law or a complete civil law procedure. One immediaìé^sultlnOTeT™wul notice, the breaking up of the dioceses into archdeaconries ; for up to this time the bishops had done most of their own work. Dunstan had sat at the south door of Canterbury Cathedral and had administered supreme justice; and one archdeacon, generally in deacon's orders, had been a sufficient eye for the bishop where he could not be personally present. The Norman bishops wanted more than one eye, and, almost immediately after the Conqueror's legislative separation of the courts, we find that the archidiaconal service is formed on the plan of that of the sheriffs ; the larger dioceses, such as Lincoln and London, being broken up into many arch


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